Indians perform Garba dance
Indians perform Garba dance Image Credit: Twitter

India was under a 'curfew' yesterday to prevent the spread of Coronavirus, but, videos of people taking to the streets and dancing during the ‘Janata (public) curfew’ on Sunday emerged on Twitter. Many Indian tweeps are outraged.

The videos show people gathering and celebrating in huge groups, banging on plates, clapping their hands, and dancing in rallies. So, what about social distancing? That was the whole point of the curfew, many tweeps have said.

During a speech on Thursday night, Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, called for a self-imposed lockdown to be observed on Sunday from 7am to 9pm. He also asked the nation’s public to “clap their hands” at 5pm as part of efforts to display their support for healthcare workers amid the coronavirus outbreak.

However, there were those who seemed to have misinterpreted Modi’s proposal and chose to socialise instead.

Several clips have emerged of people holding rallies and performing ‘garba’ (Gujarati dance form) during the lockdown.

Social media users shared the videos and urged these people to take social distancing seriously and slammed those who did not respect the curfew guidelines.

Tweep @HukkeriGanesh posted a video of a group of people dancing on the streets with a large crowd of spectators: “Oh My God! Do we want to stop or to ignite it more... When'll we understand the seriousness in such pandemic attack of Corona? #Social_Distancing Was the objective behind today's #JanataCurfew and you are playing Garba? It's time to get serious not to celebrate guys... grow up!”

User @Raghuchilukoori tweeted a clip of a rally with people seen wearing masks and beating drums, and wrote: “Can there be anything more frustrating than watching this for a healthcare worker?”

Twitter user @Forumkeralam1 posted a similar video of a group of people: “Victory celebrations... The intent of the whole act has gone for a complete toss.”

Tweep @PradeepraoBJP shared a clip apparently from his locality of a gathering of people beating drums and clapping: “My villagers voluntarily participated in the #JanataCurfew. As well as Gudipally villagers also thanked the people who are giving their service during dangerous coronavirus is spreading all over the India and they all prayed for their good health.”

Modi, @narendramodi, took to Twitter to point out that people are still not taking the lockdown seriously in the country: “Many people are still not taking the lockdown seriously. Please save yourself, save your family, follow the instructions seriously. I request the state governments to get the rules and laws followed.”

The World Health Organization has urged the public to practice social distancing. They have asked people to leave at least three feet, or one metre, between themselves and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.